Consequences of Educational Change for the Burden of Chronic Health Problems in the Population

  • Mark D. Hayward
  • Eileen M. Crimmins
  • Zhenmei Zhang
Part of the International Studies In Population book series (ISIP, volume 3)

Changes in the public and individual burden of chronic health problems have significant implications for the allocation of public and private resources across generations. Preston (1984) noted almost two decades ago that population ageing in the United States was accompanied by the rapid expansion of public programs benefiting the health of elderswhile public programs benefiting children’s education contracted. Health care is the principal public service provided to the elderly while education is the counterpart for children.

Within a historical time period, political choices about the funding of age-targeted service programs have an urgency that oftentimes sweeps aside the fact that investments in children’s well-being pay substantial dividends decades later when children become the elders of a population. In large part, this reflects a lack of attention both by policy makers and by demographers of these long-run associations. Here, we provide new insights into the longrun consequences of investments in children for the burden of chronic health problems by conducting a thought experiment in which we simulate how sweeping historical changes in a population’s educational achievement potentially alters active life expectancy and the prevalence of functioning problems in the population.


Educational Attainment Life Table Functional Limitation Educational Change Functional Problem 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark D. Hayward
    • 1
  • Eileen M. Crimmins
    • 2
  • Zhenmei Zhang
  1. 1.The University of TexasUSA
  2. 2.University of Southern CaliforniaUSA

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